Monday, January 4, 2010

Nice opportunity - shame about the mash

Last century on New Zealand television there was usually a comedy show that week by week would give us topical parody and satire of our national life and current events. Since 2000 this has been sadly reduced with with the flickering light kept alive only by the occasional series from the Gibson Group. 10 weeks in 2007 was the last appearance of "Facelift". Example at:

Gibson Group have announced a new show: "The Mash Pit"
Nice that there is an open opportunity for the public to submit creative work to a TV show. I could be right into this - but it ain't gonna happen and the reason is the mash-up gimmick. I find it very difficult to get live acting performances that are uninhibited and outrageous enough to work effectively as comedy. My actors are getting very nervous about well-publicised internet identity safety issues and it is difficult enough to get them to agree to screening on Youtube. They will not like the possibility of having their most outrageous moments taken out of context for mashing and I am not going to risk my friendships and film-making networking by trying to push them into it.

I also have a problem with music library and other content licensing that will not extend to mash-ups.

Nice idea to encourage wider participation in making TV comedy but I wish Gibson would try playing it as a straightforward submission without gimmickry like the mashing. On looking at the website I get the impression that the mashups are few in number and ineffective so they are failing to deliver an attractive advantage to outweigh the participation barrier they create.

I also criticise the way that this format seems to give a time lag between production and public screening. This is a yet another barrier to parody of current events.

Hey Gibson Group, I am a fan of your past comedy work, but I think you are stumbling with this "Mash Pit". A final thought - if mashing is such a good idea, why aren't you supplying examples of your recent productions as fodder for the mashers?

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